We’ve been posting a lot of art and photos lately, and while portraits of men in pointy hats are awesome (we’re looking at you, Kaiser), we decided to add some text post action in the form of a featured European language! Events in history are the things we remember, but it’s also important to think about how people in that age would talk/write about said events. Thus, languages! Huzzah!
This post’s language is Scottish Gaelic. It’s a Celtic language mainly spoken in Scotland (surprise!) although there are dialects spoken in certain parts of Canada, the US, Australia, and New Zealand. The language expanded in Scotland around the 4th and 5th centuries AD and became known as “Scottis.” Its decline began around the 13th century, but it still survives today as a recognized minority language in the UK; there are around 59,000 native speakers in Scotland (1.2% of the population), the majority of them in the Outer Hebrides (westernmost isles) of Scotland.
I’ve put the rest under a ‘Read More’ so it’s not too obnoxious.
Some notable English words that come from Scottish Gaelic are slogan (“battle cry”), whisky (“water of life”) and trousers.
The Scottish Gaelic alphabet as it is known today consists of the following letters: A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, L, M, N, O, P, R, S, T, and U.
Here’s how to count to ten: aon, da/dhà, trì, ceithir, còig, sia, seachd, ochd, naoi, deich.
Scotland = Alba
Hello = Halò
How are you? = Ciamar a tha thu/sibh? or Dè mar a tha thu/sibh?
Good morning = Madainn mhath
Good afternoon/evening = Feasgar math
Good night = Oidhche mhath
Goodbye = Beannachd leat/leibh
Excuse me = Gabhaibh mo leisgeul
Where’s the bathroom? = Càit a bheil an taigh beag?
My hovercraft is full of eels = Tha mo bhàta-foluaimein loma-làn easgannan
Please = Ma ‘se ur toil e.
Thank you = Tapadh leat
You’re welcome = 'Se do bheatha
I love you = Tha gaol agam ort
Cheers! (As in, clinking mugs) = Slàinte!
Here's an example of a native speaker speaking Scottish Gaelic (I think the plaid makes the experience that much more authentic).
And finally, if you’re interested in Scottish Gaelic music, I recommend checking out Julie Fowlis - she did some songs for the Pixar movie Brave, and she’s really a wonderful artist. Here's one of her songs, and here's another one.
Mar sin leibh an dràsda!
Note: One of these links has audio pronunciations next to its phrases - that might help!